Fishing season has finally hit its stride. And if they can keep from getting lost in the fog, anglers are finding dinner. There are reports of bonito. Striped bass are still around, although in deeper water. Somebody caught a nice bluefish in Nantucket Sound on Wednesday morning. Someone else was seen toting five gallon buckets full of black sea bass.

Capt. Everett (Porky) Francis of Edgartown, who listens to the radio and talks to other anglers, said on Wednesday that Atlantic bonito have been caught at Hawes Shoal, the Hooter, and Hedge Fence. That’s a good sign as August arrives.

Two weeks after it opened, the commercial season for striped bass is moving at a fast clip. As of last week, more than a quarter of the state striped bass quota had been caught. At that rate, the commercial striped bass season will likely close by the end of August. The quota for striped bass this year is 1,107,118 pounds. Bass fishing was slower last year.

With less than two weeks left in the fluke season, fishermen already have caught over 80 per cent of their quota, landing 561,000 pounds (the state quota is 702,614 pounds). The numbers are reported on the state Division of Marine Fisheries Web site. The season opened on June 10.

So if you plan to eat fluke this summer, now is the time. Once the commercial quota is met, locally caught fluke will only be landed by recreational fishermen until the season closes on August 13.

Recreational fluke fishermen are limited to five fish per day; the minimum size is 18.5 inches.

The black sea bass fishery will not open to commercial fishermen in August as planned. The Division of Marine Fisheries issued an announcement last week that the available state quota had already been met earlier in the year, and possibly had been exceeded.

So recreational fishermen have the black sea bass fishery to themselves in August. The fish are here and are plentiful. The recreational limit is 20 fish and the minimum size is 12.5 inches.

Harry’s Buoy

In an unusual step, the Holmes Hole Sailing Association this month renamed a government marker in the outer Vineyard Haven harbor. Red Nun number 6 is now called Harry Duane’s Buoy in honor of an association sailing enthusiast.

Mr. Duane is spending his second summer in Vermont and will not be out sailing this year. But years ago he was a formidable competitive sailor on his 27-foot Soling. Among the sailors, he was the man to beat.

Two years ago at a sailors’ potluck supper, John Amabile, commodore of the Holmes Hole Sailing Association, came up with the idea of reaming the buoy. Mr. Duane was given a framed photograph of Red Nun number 6 being pushed by the current. Located just outside the Vineyard Haven Harbor, for years that government buoy has marked the start and finish for sailing races.

But naturally Mr. Duane wasn’t going to let the association have the last word on the gift. With a few adjustments, he turned the photograph into a keepsake to be kept within the association. He put the name of past commodores Jerry Goodale, Pat West and Roger Becker on the back and gave back it to Mr. Amabile.

“He decided to make it a traditional passing of the mantra,” Mr. Amabile said.

In order not to allow Mr. Duane the pleasure of having the last word, the association this summer renamed the buoy.

“Harry Duane was basically our spiritual leader, even though he was not officially the commodore,” Mr. Amabile said.

The official buoy name has not been changed; it won’t appear on any navigational maps. But the spirited sailors of the Holmes Hole Sailing Association have got their name, and they are sticking with it.

Saltwater enthusiasts have been naming fishing spots for generations: Norton’s Point, Arruda’s, Metcalf’s Hole, Robinson’s Hole, Quick’s Hole and Douglas Rock are all examples.

Boating Safety

Menemsha Coast Guard executive petty officer Jordan Baptiste has some advice for local boat owners. His crew reports that the most common safety compliance issue they are finding among boat owners is expired flares. Flares, like fire extinguishers, must be kept up to date. Expired flares are unreliable.

Mr. Baptiste said the Coast Guard is also finding that many boat owners are not properly outfitted with flotation devices. “You have to have one that is ready, easily available,” Mr. Baptiste said. The intent is to have a life jacket that can be passed or thrown to someone out in the water.

A type four floatation device can be a floating ring or even a floating cushion.

And with all the fog we have had this summer, Mr. Baptiste said boat owners should have a sound-producing device, a horn of some kind. “You’ll need something to attract attention,” he said.

A number of Web sites list the Coast Guard requirements for a boat based on length.

Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby

The start of the fall derby is six weeks away. The 64th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby starts on Sunday, Sept. 13 and runs until Saturday, Oct. 17.

Plenty of time to practice casting and read up on the rules.